Get to know U-Thong Kingdom of Thailand
U thong was one of the ancient empires in Thailand before the Ayutthaya Period which is now located in Suphanburi Province in central Thailand. The U thong kingdom was empired by the King named U-Thong which later became the name of this empire. During the U thong period, Cambodian or Khmer at that time was the greatest empire in SEA (South east Asia) which had a great influence on Uthong traditions, art, and culture.
Get to know Uthong Style
A Perfectly blending Thai and Khmer charming style ‘Uthong’
The U Thong Style is one of the definitive styles for Buddha icons which developed in Thailand (Siam) in the southern capital of Ayutthaya. U Thong art flourished in Central Thailand between the 12-15th century in the period when Khmer influence was diminishing or disappearing and before and during the early stages of the Ayutthaya Kingdom. As such U Thong style was influenced by previous and contemporary styles in the region.
Typical of U Thong Buddha images is a small band between the hairline and the forehead. The head features small curls. The face of the Buddha image is rather square with Mon and Khmer characteristics. During the early period the ushnisha (prominent bump on the top of Buddha’s head) is topped by a lotus bud. In the later period (Sukhothai influence), this is replaced by an elongated flame. The face became more oval later on, and the body more elongate dunder the influence of the Sukhothai style. The eyes are cast (not inlaid as often the case with images of the Ayutthaya period).
The robe is draped in the open mode with a long flap over the left shoulder (see image below) ending above the navel.
U Thong style Buddha images mostly display the gesture of Subduing Mara in the sitting position, and the gesture of Dispelling Fear (Abhaya Mudra) in the standing position.
“Pacifying the Relatives” – Pang Ham Yati Posture
This posture of Buddha, from traditional, is believed to be the Monday Buddha posture image in which the posture is standing with the right hand raised to shoulder height with the palm out, and the fingers extended (the Abhaya Mudra). This image represents Buddha pacifying the relatives or in Thai called ‘Pang Ham Yati’
The story of this posture goes back to… When Buddha returned from heaven after three months preaching the deities his Dhamma lesson, his relatives were arguing about the rights to water flowing through their land. Buddha persuaded them to compromise by upping one of his hands with two feet standing straight to the ground then giving their fighting relatives some preaching words which made them stop and listen. From that on, this posture was named ‘Pang ham Yati’ or “Pacifying the relatives’ and became one of the Monday Buddha posture according to Thai tradition and belief.
Yaowarat Antique : The Antique shop
“Yaowarat Antique” located in Yaowarat Street known as the old town of Bangkok has been open for over 30 years. Started by the family of “Danvirunhavanich”. By converting little antique artifacts such as old stamps and antique toys into Benjarong or Porcelain plates. Then Mr.Danvirunhavanich began to open his own antique shop which was at first named “Chiva sart” meaning “The lesson of life”. After the retirement of Mr.Danvirunhavanich, “Tee” known as “Tee Yaowarat” : son of Mr.Danvirunhavanich took over to take care of this antique shop. Yaowarat Antique Shop is a popular-oriented antique store among Bangkokian people. Many of their antiques have a unique southeast Asian and Thai style. For those who love Asian antiques, once you come to Bangkok, it’s a must to visit this place!